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Chronic Pelvic Pain ? Finding the Right Help
Diane Newman, RN-C, MSN, ANP posted:
Chronic pelvic pain and vulvodynia, two frustrating pelvic disorders seen in young adult women, are not well understood. Research on these two conditions, which are often linked under the umbrella of "chronic pain syndromes", is scarce, especially as it relates to successful treatments.

Vulvodynia?s main symptom is pain in the vulva (area around the opening of the vagina and urethra). It is a chronic pain syndrome that affects up to 15%?20% of women. Women will complain of vulvar discomfort and describe it as burning or stabbing pain. They may experience pain during sex. Activities such as bicycle riding, tampon insertion, prolonged sitting, and wearing tight clothes may cause this pain. Vulvodynia is not associated with sexually transmitted diseases (STDs).

Chronic pelvic pain is pelvic pain that continues for more than six months and as many of the same symptoms as vulvodynia.

Many women consent to hysterectomy or other major surgery and still experience chronic pelvic pain. Chronic pelvic pain is often intractable and unremitting and may lead to lifestyle changes that affect work, recreation and personal relationships. An integrated multidisciplinary team approach to treatment is often the best way to give a woman the greatest chance of a long-term cure.
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